Whereas aggressive gamers proceed to plumb Pokémon Scarlet and Violet’s strategic depth and tease out its tactical wrinkles, one creature has gotten a stunning quantity of playtime during the last month: Murkrow. The unevolved flying darkish sort isn’t a heavy hitter and its stats are absolute trash, nevertheless it does have a singular benefit over each different Pokémon within the recreation that’s despatched it straight to the prime of the aggressive charts.
Browse social media, hang around on the Smogon message boards, or climb the ranked ladder and also you gained’t be capable of escape Murkrow. The tiny black hen first launched in Pokémon Gold and Silver is lastly again within the highlight, and former Pokémon World Champion Wolfe “WolfeyVGC” Glick defined the the reason why in a latest TikTok:
The primary is Tailwind, a transfer the Gen 2 hen has had from the soar, however which is supremely vital within the present panorama, offering all different Pokémon on the workforce bonus velocity for 4 turns. The second is Prankster, a passive capability that lets Murkow’s non-damage-dealing strikes, like Tailwind, take elevated flip precedence throughout battles, thus permitting it to strike first. In Scarlet and Violet’s Gen 9, Murkrow is the solely Pokémon who has each, guaranteeing a match-defining velocity increase on flip one.
However why Murkrow and never its advanced type of Honchkrow? Nicely, Murkrow’s advanced kind loses Prankster in alternate for the damage-oriented passive capability Moxie, ruining the entire technique. Plus, gamers can mitigate a few of Murkrow’s drawbacks by equipping the held merchandise Eviolite which boosts the traditional and particular protection of Pokémon who aren’t absolutely advanced.
“Don’t get me unsuitable, the mix of Prankster is absolutely good nevertheless it isn’t the one cause that Murkrow is in style,” WolfeyVGC added in his latest TikTok. “Murkrow additionally will get the assault Haze which removes all stat adjustments from the battlefield. That is related as a result of one of the vital highly effective new Pokémon added is Dondozo who has a option to increase all of its stats by 2.” Haze fully nullifies that, making Murkrow an ideal counter to Dondozo along with being a significant utility decide for reinforcing the remainder of your workforce.
That’s been sufficient to make Murkrow the second most picked Pokémon in aggressive play for December, only one share level behind all-star crypto coin mascot Gholdengo. As WolfeyVGC wrote in a Twitter thread a few weeks in the past, Gholdengo’s twin ghost/metal sort make it a fantastic defensive decide, whereas particular capability Make it Rain does a ton of injury.
The Swords-Dance-wielding Garchomp and Bulk Up defensive tank Annihilape are additionally prime contenders, as is Hydreigon who can lastly use the brand new video games’ Terastalization mechanic to mitigate its conventional 4X weak point to Fairy-type strikes. The mushroom bug Amoonguss, in the meantime, has been tearing issues up due to Rage Powder which forces opponents to focus on it quite than buff themselves.